Written by: Paul Sparrow, Area Managing Partner & CMO, Chief Outsiders with Samuel Kniseley Ballesteros of The Advantage Solution and a Professional EOS® Implementer
For anyone who’s ever held a circular saw or tin snips, you know the importance of measurement. With the exception of artist Pablo Picasso and perhaps architect Frank Gehry, precise measurements are absolutely critical in gaining the right result.
If you have a manufacturing business, you know what we’re talking about – think about what your supply chain would look like if you didn’t bother to measure things like delivery time, for example. Your customers would rebel, your reputation would suffer – and you may not have a business for very long.
For all the care that business leaders take in measuring things like deliveries, sales figures, and customer sizes, it’s surprising how few entrepreneurs measure the results from marketing. You’ve invested in a digital marketing campaign, you've purchased ads, you've made some improvements to your website – and, voila – you’ve “done marketing.”
But without a way to measure things like the traffic to your website, or the efficacy of your advertising, you’re probably not doing anything but spinning your wheels. Look, we get it—marketing isn’t really in the DNA of most entrepreneurs—typically, most self-made business leaders gain their stripes through operations, or finance or sales or engineering, among others.
But if you don’t pair a robust and MEASURED marketing campaign with your EOS® program, you’ve likely spent twice the money, but completed only half the work.
In our previous blogs, we introduced you to the Entrepreneurial Operating System—a way to align the moving parts of a business—and the long-term business plan needed to make it happen. Now, it’s time to focus on marketing – not the “little m” stuff of pretty pictures and fluffy words, but the “Big M” strategies that will help the world focus on your vision.
For most CEOs who haven’t paid close attention to marketing, this “big picture” work may feel a bit unusual. Outside of data, statistics, and other tangible information, building your marketing strategy requires a bit of prework in the understanding of more ethereal concepts:
Core Value: These are the essential set of behaviors or characteristics that we want to embody the culture of our organization – both from internal and external stakeholders. In taking leadership teams through the exercise to discover, and validate, their core values, it is our hope to attract the kind of people that energize us, and repel (like a magnet) those who don’t share our values.
Core Focus: With the core values solidified, we turn to the core focus – your sweet spot. You may have a different term for this at your company, since it's been called a million things in the world of business: A mission statement, a vision statement, your “voice,” according to Stephen Covey, and even the “hedgehog concept,” as coined by Jim Collins. Whatever you call it, this is a critical moment in defining your sweet spot – this will help you stay laser focused so as not to get distracted by the shiny things.
10-Year Target: This is your number one goal for the organization – the big picture that you hope you will embody at the end of the next 10-year interval. This target will give the team and the rest of the organization the ability to see where you are going with clarity.
In the simplest form, this is what Chief Marketing Officers like to do when rolling up their sleeves. The end result typically is rewarding, but the journey doesn’t need to be overly complex.
In simple terms, the marketing strategy consists of:
Recognizing that there is an awful lot to consider, we genuinely hope through this series that you’ve gained a greater understanding of how the pairing of EOS® and marketing strategy, like a smooth wine and delicious steak, will rarely disappoint. Bon Appetit!
Of course, the simplest and fastest way to determine what type of support might provide your business with the highest benefit is to give one of us a shout to discuss your needs. We’d be happy to have that conversation with you.
In case you missed the other posts from the series:
Paul Sparrow, Area Managing Partner & CMO, Chief Outsiders